Todd Barclay tape scandal - More allegations of false statements emerge
National Party MP Todd Barclay has been caught out again, this time with allegations of giving a false statement to media.
Mr Barclay has been embroiled in scandal following revelations he secretly recorded a staff member in his office. He spent most of Tuesday avoiding media and denying the allegations, before eventually backing down and accepting a statement Prime Minister Bill English made to police.
Now it's emerged Mr Barclay falsely told NZME there had been complaints about staffer Glenys Dickson and she had been reprimanded.
But a letter from Parliamentary Services, who take care of employment matters, says no complaints existed.
"Parliamentary Services has neither received any complaint about you nor has it carried out any employment investigation or taken any disciplinary action against you," the letter written to Ms Dickson and provided to Newsroom, says.
Mr Barclay has struggled to get his story straight regarding an employment dispute in his Clutha-Southland electorate office.
Mr Barclay initially denied the recording took place and said there had been no bullying in his office.
Meanwhile, Mr English accepted media claims he knew about the scandal but said he couldn't recall who told him about it. Within hours it emerged he actually told a senior police officer it was Mr Barclay himself who told him about the recording.
On Tuesday evening, Mr Barclay said he read Mr English's statement to police and accepts it, which could be enough of an admission for police to reopen the investigation.
Newshub political editor Patrick Gower says the public needs to question where the Prime Minister's integrity is if he has been protecting Mr Barclay in this manner.
"There are real issues as to whether the Prime Minister has been telling the truth to the New Zealand public," Mr Gower told The AM Show.
"The PM has known about this. The PM has known all along, kept quiet and covered it up," Mr Gower added.
Watch the video for Patrick Gower's report to The AM Show